how to control sexual desire before marriage
I have been single for seven years and celibate for about three years. While making the decision was easy staying committed meant that I had to learn how to control sexual desires when single.
Even though I enjoy my single season, there is always a part of me that misses the intimacy of a relationship. The long phone calls, the funny conversations, but also the physical intimacy of a kiss and more. I would be lying if I didn’t acknowledge the latter because sexual desires are real and shouldn’t be swept under the carpet.
As a Christian woman, we oftentimes feel confused or guilty about a desire, which is supposed to be a gift from God. We wonder how to deal with it and are afraid to admit that it even exists.
That’s why today I share with you 3 practical tips on how to control sexual desires when single.
1. Place Them Under God’s Control
First thing I want to clarify is that God gave us a sexual-appetite when he created us so that we would want to be intimate with our future husband. It’s a good thing if it is used within the right boundaries, which is marriage.
Nevertheless, I asked myself, why would God give us a sexual desire so early on in our lives when we really just need it from the moment we are married? After doing some research and praying about it, the answer was very simple and is found in Hebrews 2:16-18:
‘For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.’
Jesus came to this earth as a human being, fighting the same temptations as we are today, and he remained free of sin. How did he do it? By placing every temptation into God’s control. Whenever Jesus was tempted or struggled to accept God’s will he would pray.
Through prayer, we render our struggles to God. And we can trust in Jesus to help us because he faced them as a human being too.
2. Avoid Feeding Your Sexual Desires
As a Christian, we are commanded to ‘flee from sexual immorality’. Most of us do so by avoiding establishments and situations that could lead to lust. Staying away from a bar or a club and not inviting a guy over to your house at midnight are no-brainers and will help you to control sexual desires when single.
However, what about the half-naked model that suddenly appears on your Instagram feed while scrolling down your timeline? Or the uncomfortable sex scene in a romantic comedy you agreed to watch with your girlfriends? These scenarios catch us off guard and now we have to deal with the afterthoughts.
This is where we should follow Paul’s advice. In Romans 13:14 he says to ‘make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires’.
That’s why if a certain show you like to watch repeatedly includes scenes that can lead to lust, it is time to stop watching it until you are strong enough to resist. Same for the music you listen to and the people you follow on Social Media.
I’m convinced that each one of us has different pitfalls and what makes one-person stumble might be fine for another. Know yourself and use discernment to assess the situation before you submit yourself to it.
How to control sexual desire before marriage
3. Get An Accountability Partner/ Circle
This one is a great point for the ones of you that are in a relationship or preparing to be. An accountability partner/ circle is one or multiple close friends that encourage each other to remain pure and holy before God.
Like I mentioned earlier I believe that acknowledging your sexual desires before they turn into sexual immorality is important.
Therefore, seeking counsel with others and letting them in on your battle will help you fight through it. Friends that know and love you, want you to succeed. And will provide you with the spiritual guidance and support you need to finish the race.
An accountability circle can be as simple as a chat where you get to ask for prayer or advice. But it can also be a group that meets regularly to discuss scripture about sex, relationship, and love. The goal is to exchange tips on how to control sexual desires when single, remain pure, and learn about biblical principles that today’s culture disregards.
Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. – 1 Timothy 4:12
When I first entered my single season in 2010 I didn’t think it would last that long. And it took me a while until I was able to understand God’s design for it. But once I did these three practical tips on how to control sexual desires when single helped me navigate through it.
And now I’m at a comfortable point that allows me to control my sexual desires even when I’m in a tempting situation.
It’s not easy but doable and if you still find yourself struggling after trying these tips, then I warmly recommend reading The Wait by Devon Franklin and Meagan Good.
The Wait is filled with personal stories about their past dysfunctions and the challenging path towards marriage. But most importantly, they provide honest feedback, practical advice and a lot of encouragement.
Remember that whenever a song, a picture or a movie puts a sexual desire in your heart you can use a short prayer to give it to Christ. This one is simple but effective and redirects your thoughts to God in a moment of weakness:
‘Dear God I pray that you are my greatest desire. I ban the lust and sin of sexual immorality and thank you for freeing me from it. Amen.’
Do you have any more practical tips on how to control sexual desires when single? Share them BELOW!